Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Easter Saturday in Carcassonne

Saturday morning started off agreeably enough. I forgo the chores that were beckoning to me and skipped out to join friends for coffee in sunny Place Carnot. I use the word 'skipped' loosely but one couldn't help but feel uplifted by the marvellous weather. I trotted out my usual annoying tit bit of information that the market has a wonderful vibrancy at 8am (or earlier)  and proceeded to wax lyrical of the gleaming glistening mounds of fresh wide eyed gaping fish piled high in Les Halles. Sumptuous cuts of meat lovingly labelled and wrapped for the many families and friends joined together for Easter.  Cheeses galore in every shape, size and mellow colours vying for attention as people bustle with purpose clutching onto their woven baskets with worn leather straps or dangerously weave their trolleys past unsuspecting ankles. 
Artichokes, wild asparagus, plump cloves of pink tinged garlic, sticks of rhubarb, fresh green fat leaves of chard, spinach leaves, beets covered in soil, crisp celery, endives, tiny new potatoes snuggling against each other, fat cauliflowers, robust cabbages and spindly turnips to name but a few were being inspected and prodded with enthusiasm.
 I lifted my face to the sun and savoured the moment. In my friends basket I spied the large chocolate rabbit with huge white eyes and perky ears. 'I've got my eye on him' I said. 'He's got his eye on you' he retorted and so began a passionate discussion on the merits of individual chocolate producers of the region, the never ending choice of Languedoc wines, the feel, smell, seductive look of the food we are so fortunate to have close at hand;  Soon we all began to look rather dreamy at the prospect of Easter Sunday lunch which was promising to be a feast bought together by the spoils of our Saturday morning foray in Carcassonne market.


By then it was time for me to depart and throw myself into work.  I weaved my way through the crowds and as I passed the Musée des-Beaux-Arts I spied the solitary marble statue sitting quietly alone in the corner of the courtyard. He was sparsely covered in moss, the shadows of the gently stirring trees caressing him.  No-one else was there and so I slipped in and went to see him close up.

He appeared to be in deep thought, poised and confident and surrounded by silence save for a few birds twittering.  He was mainly lost to the crowds pouring past on the street outside, oblivious to the struggle of everyday life.  And it gave me the opportunity to reflect for a moment, to think of friends and family far away who are ill,  to know and be aware of the suffering of others as they seek to enrich our lives and are drawn into battles of which they have no power over.

I thought of an Easter message from a friend of mine. He said:

Happy Easter to all who celebrate this weekend! And to those who don't, just love life a little bit more.

Quite.

1 comment:

Procrastinator extraodinaire said...

Been catching up with your last few posts and yes agree it is always lovely tô have an excuse to dress up. Think people don't do it enough in this day and age.
Easter is less stressful than Christmas, less presents to buy despite commercialisms best efforts. Xx